Well, it’s official.
To mark the end of principal photography, director Ron Howard has confirmed that his Han Solo anthology pic will release as Solo: A Star Wars Story on May 25th, 2018.
Howard initially took control of the Star Wars spinoff back in June, when Lucasfilm fired erstwhile directors Phil Lord and Chris Miller due to creative differences. The Powers That Be later executed a similar shake-up for the untitled Episode IX, after J.J. Abrams was drafted in to replace the outgoing Colin Trevorrow.
As for Solo, it’s now evident that Lucasfilm and Disney are adhering to a fairly strict template when it comes to their Star Wars anthology series, given today’s announcement follows in the footsteps of Rogue One. It’s all in an effort to differentiate these spinoffs from the core Skywalker saga (Obi-Wan: A Star Wars Story, anyone?), so don’t be too surprised if Howard’s star-studded origin pic ships without an opening crawl come 2018.
— Ron Howard (@RealRonHoward) October 17, 2017
Said to take place across “three different eras over a seven-year period,” during which time we’ll check in on the titular hero between the ages of 18 and 24, Solo: A Star Wars Story will seemingly include a nod to Han’s famous Kessel Run, along with a number of instantly recognizable planets from the franchise’s lore.
Casting-wise, Alden Ehrenreich is set to portray the legendary smuggler, and we fully expect Ron Howard and Co. to shed light on how the great Han Solo came to be, including his first run-in with Lando Calrissian (Donald Glover) and acquiring the Millennium Falcon. Woody Harrelson, Emilia Clarke, Thandie Newton, and Phoebe Waller-Bridge co-star.
Despite that unexpected shake-up, Solo: A Star Wars Story remains on course for May 25th, 2018. That tells us the first teaser trailer ought to be online sooner rather than later. The Last Jedi is just around the corner, after all.